Monday, July 25, 2011

Update: So, How are Those Summer Plans Going?

Write, paint and draw, submit stories, read, encourage, reunite with many great friends, drop several pounds, blog, tend my garden, walk 3 miles a day, organize and purge my “piles” that collect (already got a jump start on that one), plan for the fall, hang out on day trips with my Sis, two weddings, listen to music, hopefully go see Les Mis at the Ahmanson, take a few short trips with Ted and Corey, make my zucchini quiche (definitely not on my diet), stay healthy mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Some “s” things I will keep doing: continue to meet with my small group and Starbucks…skinny latte for now. 

Two blogs ago, I wrote the above list of things, hoping to keep me accountable knowing I had "put it in writing and on the internet."  It is mid July now, and I think it is time to hit the refresh button.

I. Writing:  I try to write everyday. Two articles, both with a Christmas theme, I wait for results after  submitting; one to a "Chicken Soup" possibility and the other, an anthology of inspiring Christmas stories. Also writing a few devotionals as God speaks to me, is something I really enjoy and love to share. August; more writing planned and  the month I plan to start submitting  my children's book, "A Worm's Eye View." 
II. Art Work: The last in a series of 6 cards I designed with a TOAD as the central character, hops out of my printer and I am preparing the final examples to send to possible card publishers.  Will you pray with me about this?  I have two completed in another series.  
III. Secret Art project:  This is in combination with an old, close friend, Sally  visiting for a class reunion.  Thirty-five plus years whizzed by since we have been in contact. Along with my friends Joyce and Lynn,  a great time together was logged in more memory cells. Sally resides in South Dakota. Her spunk and reconnection with me on Facebook along with the anticipation of her visit, inspired me to create a personal gift for her.  She sent me a picture of her "neighborhood", a spring meadow. My interpretation was done in oil pastels.

Coleene and Sally
South Dakota Meadow 
 IV. Drop several pounds and the walking:  Yeah! Progress is being made.  I walk 4 miles almost every day.  I really enjoy it ...a good habit. The weight?  Fifteen pounds gone! My goal is 10 more by the time school starts at the end of  August.  

V. My All Class Reunion was last weekend, over 700 in attendance from high school ranging from the early 1960's to the late 1990's I believe, until our school changed to a middle school. Many in my class are still close friends and we had a great time reuniting with other years as well.  Here is our class group photo.  Next year our 40th Reunion hopes to reunite even more of our classmates to celebrate many memories, school spirit and life.

   VI.  Gardening:  This year, the harvest is bountiful. We are now enjoying tomatoes, peppers and zucchini.  Drying my herbs, I hope to package them for savory gifts.
VII.  Day Trips:  Returning this weekend from a few days spent with my sister, Lauren, I will reserve that experience and pictures for another blog.  

Up and Coming August plans: A Wedding. Rick, A very close friend of our son Tim, plans to  "tie the knot" officially the first  Friday in August.  I am contemplating already a very emotional day for me. I know Tim would be so happy for Rick finding his true love after so many years.  Congratulations Rick and Toni!  

 Another friend to visit:  I am anxious and  excited to see my East Coast buddy, Diane, who will be visiting in August.

Las Vegas:  My husband's friends like to do things up in a big way. Turning  the magic number "55" this year,  they are throwing themselves a party in Vegas.  (yes, Vegas in August...).  What happens in Vegas?  We shall see.  

So, where is all the inspiration in this blog you may be asking?  Everybody has things to do, summer fun, reunions, gardens and great friends.  What can I say here that will make you glad you read this blog today? 

Maybe you have just been a little LAZY this summer and need some motivation.  A closet needs to be cleaned out, a dentist appointment  has been postponed too long, your kids have been wanting to see the latest action movie or long for a trip to the beach.  When was the last time you made a s'more or tried a new recipe?  I am the queen of procrastination, but God has been teaching me to prioritize and plan better, make lists and be better disciplined in many areas of my life. What better day than today to start a project you have always wanted to try. Some things may seem overwhelming. Break jobs down into mini-projects and try to work on one thing a week.  Repaint a room with a fresh color, re-pot a plant and add several more to the mix for a color bowl, scrapbook a few pages, swim several laps!  

 The LORD will guide you always;  He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden,  like a spring whose waters never fail.  Isaiah 58:11

After my son passed away, I found my nights to be very restless. Sitting still for a long period of time watching TV or any other idle activity brought me down and anxious.   Keeping my mind busy, writing and purchasing a small water color tray and a few brushes, I tried to  renew an old gift I thought lost in my youth and for sure, never confident in.  God swept me off my feet and gave me comfort and the encouragement in what I was DOING; thus moving me forward. God can and will do the same for you, whatever you are stuck in. 

You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy Psalm 30:11 

The walking?  I Just decided one day that starting the first Monday of summer vacation, my steps would be deliberate and prayerful.  I charted a course and 3 miles are now 4 miles a day.  

  The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in Him.  Psalm 37:23  

Always making an effort to keep and cherish my friendships both old and new, God's blessings overwhelm me with His bountiful blessings of many true, longstanding relationships.  This also takes work and time. but oh, what joy fills my heart.  Give your best friend from high school a call today; make a Starbucks date.
                   "A cup of coffee shared with a friend is happiness tasted and time well spent."

I have another month before school starts, so more days to get projects completed, write, draw, organize, walk, and move forward.  More days to bring God praise.

In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps. Proverbs 16:9

What are your summer projects?  I'd love to hear your plans and progress. 


  1. Ahhh, Coleene, you bless my heart again. I am blessed to call you friend. Thank you! :)

  2. It is so nice to be updated on what you've been up to. I'm sorry we did not have as great a chance to talk at the July meeting at Linda & Gary's home. Looking forward to August 7th. I hope you will be there. Great post!

  3. I especially liked the part about keeping old friends. I try to do that regularly. Then I resonated with the part about God meeting us in the moving forward...more about that later:)

  4. Well, I think I've been a bit stuck this summer. I lost a sister-in-law, my oldest sister struck with breast cancer, I don't think I've been coping well with grief. Probably I should call my friend from 4th grade through high school and catch up! Thanks for reminding me, my friend.